In my last blog post we discussed the issue of Copyright Laws in Canada and how it applies to Indigenous Culture. Depending on which side of the fence you stand on will determine who will be identified as the owner of the intellectual property. As I wrote previously, “The question that should be discussed is who are the true owners of Indigenous knowledge? Is it the author who writes about Indigenous knowledge or the Indigenous people/community? So how do we ethically address this issue in the classroom setting?

RESPECT/Digital Etiquette

As a result of ED&I 832 it was decided that we needed to form an Indigenous Advisory Committee to ensure that we are implementing treaty education in classes with the use of technology in a respectful manner. Oral tradition is very important when discussing Indigenous Culture. One area we found that was a learning curve was that electronic standards of conduct or procedure could differ from one Indigenous Community to another. For example the Indigenous Advisory Committee mentioned that no video or audio recording can be used during sacred ceremonies. A question was asked in that discussion pertaining to students. It was asked “How many students would pull their phone out and capture it on their device”? Advisory Committee acknowledged that this is a concern that Indigenous and Non-Indigenous students may not realize the proper etiquette when it comes to technology use in the context of Indigenous culture.

EDUCATE/Digital Communication

The Advisory Committee has been providing support regarding the appropriate use of technology in the context of treaty education. One point that was stressed was the importance of Elder and Knowledge Keeper contact with the students in person or through web conferencing. They mentioned that digital communication could be used to facilitate a connection with the Indigenous Community Members. It was expressed that it is important that oral traditions be respected and students should and need the opportunity to hear it first hand from a credible source. Lastly, it was stressed that any video that is captured must be used in it’s entirety. The teacher will have guidelines regarding how to present any treaty education materials in the classroom.

PROTECT/Digital Rights and Responsibilities

In my blog I write about the Digital Divide that exists between Indigenous and Non Indigenous Communities. It is paramount that all students regardless of their cultural background receive equal access to technology. By introducing technology/Digital Citizenship to early learners are hope to help reduce the Digital Divide between Indigenous and Non-Indigenous communities.

One platform that we have selected is by using Boom Cards. The platform can be accessed at Also, we will be including in our treaty kits Ipads so students can express what they have learned regarding treating education and be able to share it with their peers, teachers and parents.

What are your thoughts regarding activities Early Learners can participate that would strengthen their Digital Citizenship skills?